Today we leave Wellington and start the drive back to Auckland. We could push through and do it in one day, but decide to take our time and travel around the west coast of NZ, spending the night in New Plymouth.
Along the way, there are lots of secret surf spots to check out. A good stretch of the highway is named “surfer’s highway” with signs to various beaches along the way. We decide to stop by a few and see our first surfers in action. A group of eager young kids brave the cold and the wind and seem to be having a great time in the water.
We get into New Plymouth in the early evening and spend some time exploring the shops in this small town. We ended up staying at the BBH hostel (another hostel affiliation), as the YHA hostel in New Plymouth is pretty run down. The BBH hostel is much nicer and has a nice cottage feel to the place.
In the common room we end up meeting some folks from Australia who are visiting friends for the night. We end up chatting about our plans to head up to the very north, and the one guy, Spike tells us he works for a tour company, Awesome NZ that runs tours to 90 mile beach. We keep this in mind for our journey the next day.
Turn in early for the night as we prepare to head to Auckland the next day.